Bitcoin Ready To Go Mainstream
Recently armed with $500,000 in seed funding and a partnership with Silicon Valley Bank, Coinlab, a startup based out of Seattle, is bringing its innovative Bitcoin project closer to the U.S. market.
Considered the domain of nerds, conspiracy theorists and shady internet characters the move could push Bitcoin more mainstream.
Bitcoin is a crypto-currency; a decentralized, open source, peer-to-peer network based medium of exchange that for years has enabled online transactions to be made more simply and securely. Bitcoin also has its dark side, its anonymity allowing users to make purchases of contraband online.
The deal brings over the North America-based book of Mt. Gox, one of the largest and most widely used bitcoin to currency exchanges. According to Coinlab CEO, Peter Vessenes, the book is worth nearly $500 million in annualized trade volumes, which he expects to grow nearly ten times over the next year.
Silicon Valley Bank, a company that provides financial services to emerging growth companies, will be holding deposits of bitcoin and dollars for Coinlab. However, they will not be providing insurance for these deposits. The move will allow North America-based Mt. Gox users to directly convert money from dollars to bitcoin, without having to pay the hefty transaction fees associated with transferring money abroad.